|Thursday, February 10, 2011 – Robert Lang and Associated Press|
|The co-chair of a legislative panel reviewing Maryland’s death penalty protocols says proposed rules will be withdrawn due to the lack of availability of a drug used in lethal injections.
Delegate Anne Healey, a Prince George’s Democrat, said Thursday that she was told by Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services Secretary Gary Maynard that he is withdrawing the protocols.
She says that’s because changes in the protocols will be so substantive that the rules will have to be revised.
The sole U.S. manufacturer of the lethal injection drug announced last month it is ending production because of death-penalty opposition overseas.
Healey’s committee had been scheduled to meet next week to consider revised protocols.
A court ruling in 2006 requires approval of the protocols before an execution can take place in Maryland.
Legislation has been introduced in the House of Delegates to ban executions. Aides to Governor Martin O’Malley have said the governor would sign the legislation, but it is not part of his legislative agenda.
In 2009, lawmakers approved new restrictions for death penalty prosecutions.
… What a total legislative joke. …